Diesel costs leave coast high and dry

High diesel prices are hurting local businesses and (below) Coun Tommy Threlfall.
High diesel prices are hurting local businesses and (below) Coun Tommy Threlfall.
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MOTORISTS are facing a record high price of diesel – and it is set to remain that way.

Prices in some parts of the country have reached a whopping £1.50 a litre, while the average cost for diesel currently stands at 143.61p while petrol remains at 135.39p.

Coun Tommy Threlfall

Coun Tommy Threlfall

Companies and the emergency services are set to suffer rising costs as they work longer hours and spend their vital budgets on fuel.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service spent an extra £16,000 on top of their annual £400,000 fuel budget, while taxi drivers say they are working 12 hour shifts to pay the bills.

John Taylor, a spokesman for the fire service, said: “Something we have been especially rigorous about when it comes to wasting fuel is hoax calls.

“Not only does this waste fuel, it ties-up resources.

“We haven’t built in much of a cushion to help our fuel costs, but when you look at what an emergency service uses, we also need the fuel to power our pumps.”

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Prices for diesel in garages around the Fylde coast went up yesterday and many are two pence away from breaking the £1.50 barrier.

The Total garage on Collingwood Avenue, Layton, and the Shell garage on Fleetwood Road, Greenhalgh, are both charging 147.9p a litre.

Coun Tommy Threlfall, portfolio holder for the environment at Fylde Council and an electrical contractor, says his business has come under pressure with rising diesel costs.

He said: “Diesel used to be the fuel which company vehicles used to rely on because it was cheaper, but that has been taken away now.

“It never used to be a major consideration, but now it’s bad for business.

“I now have to manage the logistics for the amount of fuel we use.”

George Robinson, a director of Blackpool’s C Cabs taxis, added: “It has generally gone up over the last 12 months and the problem is there’s no way around it.

“Everyone’s insurance has gone up by hundreds of pounds and with the rising cost of fuel, the drivers are having to work from 6.30am to 7pm to make a living.

“You can only do so much and I like to see my kids of a night.”

The rocketing price of diesel comes as motoring groups lobby Downing Street to prevent another increase in fuel duty.

Duty

But chancellor George Osborne implied this week that nothing more would be done to lower the price of fuel because he had already taken action to avoid planned increases.

He said: “We’ve taken action in last two fiscal statements either to avoid a fuel duty increase which was coming or to cut fuel duty.

“Fuel duty is 6p lower than it would have otherwise would have been.”

A spokesman for Eurogarages, which represents Shell garages, said: “It’s costing us money to buy in the fuel and it’s the Government’s fault.”

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